Lily for Pickering


I live in Pickering, Ontario, I want plant perennial Lilies hardy type suitable for my location. I will plant them in the flower beds outside my from door and in
The back yard in a flower bed. Please advise.


Thank you for asking us about suitable lilies for your Pickering, Ontario garden.

You will want to know that Pickering’s plant hardiness zone is 6 so be sure that your plant choice says Zone 6 or lower on the label.  If you are buying an American sourced plant, you will be looking for a US Zone 5 or lower on the label.

Just a nuance about hardiness zones: along with year-to-year variations in weather, microclimates can also play a role in determining the right plants for your garden. Microclimates, which are small areas of varying weather conditions within larger zones, can be caused by local geography of the area such as hills and valleys as well as variations of solar and wind exposure. So for example, if you live near the lake, your area might be warmer, meaning you could perhaps go up a zone. If your garden is exposed to hot sun or winter wind, you might want to choose a plant that is happy in a zone lower . Even buildings and pavement in urban areas can create relatively small microclimates that can potentially produce different gardening results.


There are many species, cultivars and hybrid varieties of lily and many  colours. True lilies (Lilium) include Asiatic lilies which don’t have much of a fragrance but add bright  colour to the garden. Oriental lilies have a strong fragrance and are some of the most elegant.

But we will keep this simple because Daylilies (Hemerocallis), though not true lilies in the Lilium family, are one of the most undemanding, adaptable, low maintenance, widely available at reasonable prices and pest free perennials. They thrive in any type of soil, and they are drought tolerant. For optimal blooms, top dress in the spring, water well during flowering season and ensure at least 4 -6 hours of sun each day). While the blooms last only one day, a mature plant produces many flowers over a month or more. Some varieties bloom the entire summer, and some will rebloom after removing spent flowers. They are useful to hide the yellowing foliage of spring flowering bulbs, like tulips and daffodils. Spring is a good time to plant them and adding compost is a good idea for a good start. One warning: they are toxic to cats .

How to choose among them?:

Height: Popular ‘Stella de Oro’ grows only 10-15 inches high so is good for the front of a garden or even by itself say, at your front door). It blooms more and longer than most, starting in July and reblooming late summer into  September. Most daylilies have stems (or “scapes”) that rise taller (about 15-20 inches ) and are good for the middle of the garden. You will have no difficulty finding these in your local nursery .  Taller ones 24-35 inches include ‘Hyperion’ which has lemon yellow flowers and is highly fragrant (which some people like but others do not. ..your choice).

Colour: Your choice. The range of colours available is seemingly endless.

Blooming period :  Daylilies are grouped as early bloomers, mid or late season bloomers. You would  for example, choose an early summer blooming variety if you need a punch of colour once the bloom is off the roses late June.

Form : Again your choice. Some are trumpet shaped, ruffled, or bi toned , some face down, some face out ( looking at you), others up face and look at the sky.

So glad you are considering this colourful happy plant to brighten your entrance way and well as your back garden . May you enjoy the choosing of them and the having of them to brighten your days.